Chris Larsen
Ripple co-founder Chris Larsen had a net worth of $59.9 billion as of Thursday, putting him right behind Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg on the Forbes 400 list. Ripple

Chris Larsen, the co-founder of Ripple, is now one of the richest people in the U.S. -- all thanks to a surge in the company’s cryptocurrency.

Ripple’s XRP coin, a cryptocurrency for international money transfers, has seen a surge over the past few weeks. The coin hit a high of $3.84 on Thursday, jumping from $2.30 last year.

Ripple Chris Larsen Net Worth

Larsen owns 5.19 billion XRP and a 17 percent stake in Ripple, which was previously called Ripple Labs, sources told Forbes. With the surge in the cryptocurrency, Larsen is now worth $59.9 billion on paper as of Thursday, according to CNBC. The Ripple co-founder was previously worth $37.3 billion on Monday.

The surge in XRP tokens propelled Larsen's net worth, placing him right behind Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and ahead of Oracle co-founder Larry Ellison on the Forbes 400 list. Zuckerberg takes the 4th spot on the list, with a net worth of 74.4 billion, while Ellison takes 5th place, worth 58.4 billion. Larsen is currently richer than Google founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin on paper. Larsen is also now ahead of David Koch, Charles Koch and Tesla and CEO Elon Musk.

Meanwhile, Ripple owns 61.3 billion of the 100 billion XRP coins that exist. The ownership gave the company a market value of approximately $235.4 billion as of Thursday.

Who Is Chris Larsen?

Larsen co-founded online mortgage lending platform E-LOAN in 1996 . He then went on to launch Prosper, the first peer-to-peer lending marketplace, in 2006. In 2012, Larsen, along with Jed McCaleb, launched Ripple, which provides global financial settlement solutions. The blockchain tech company has office locations in San Francisco, New York, London, Sydney, India, Singapore and Luxembourg, and has more than 100 customers worldwide.

Larsen served as the company’s CEO until 2016. After stepping down, he went on to become executive chairman of Ripple’s board of directors.

“I’m grateful for the decades-long career I’ve had in Silicon Valley and look forward to taking a break from the day-to-day while staying highly involved in Ripple’s strategic direction,” Larsen said at the time in a statement.

He added that he felt good about the change and noted that the “business is stronger than ever.”

Larsen named Brad Garlinghouse as his successor. Garlinghouse has also gotten richer with the rise of the XRP tokens. The CEO owns a 6.3 percent stake in Ripple, as well as additional XRP coins, sources told Forbes. The news outlet reported on Monday that Garlinghouse had a net worth of at least $9.5 billion, although the number has likely risen after Thursday’s coin surge.